ISLAMABAD, Pakistan: In order to promote peace, tolerance and harmony at university campuses, as many as 24 leading public sector universities of the Punjab have prepared concrete action plans at regional and university levels.
Under the joint venture of University of Education and Punjab Higher Education Commission, these plans were prepared by the Director Student Affairs (DSA’s) of universities who are considered the direct points of contact to deal various issues being faced by the university students.
Talking to the state-run news agency in Islamabad on Monday, Dr Rauf-i-Azam, Vice Chancellor University of Education Lahore said that as per three regional plans (Central, North and Southern) based upon detailed group deliberations by the DSA’s of universities have agreed to undertake collaborative efforts through organizing inter university cultural, sports, literary, co-curricular competitions & festivals among the university students.
He said that DSA’s were also agreed on strengthening student societies, organizing workshops for students to provide them proper perspectives for the promotion of peace, tolerance and conflict resolution.
The provision of various facilities such counseling through students service centers, organizing seminars, peace walks, social media summit, training of office bearer of all societies of the region on structure, functions and resources, open mind student forum for general students, appointment of peace proctors at departmental level would also be ensured, he added.
They have agreed to avail one another experiences and expertise aimed at safe, peaceful and tolerant university campuses. In this regard, regional forums of the universities would be established, Dr Rauf said.
He said that the DSA’s also suggested to the Punjab government to allocate a sum of Rs 500 per student in order to engage the enrolled university students in various extra-curricular and healthy activities in meaningful way.
The participants, he said were unanimous of the view that strengthening of directorate of student affairs would be quite helpful in addressing the issues of violence and extremism at the university campuses.
Appreciating action plans prepared by the public sector universities, Syed Raza Ali Gillani, Provincial Minister for Higher Education Punjab and Prof Dr Muhammad Nizamuddin Chairperson Punjab Higher Education Commission assured their utmost cooperation in effective implementation of the plans, he added.
They were of the view that through coordinated efforts and close liaison among the higher education institutions of the province, menace of campus based violence could be tackled in effective way, VC University of Education added.
He hoped that these action plans would prove a great steps towards promoting peace, tolerance, co-existence and harmony at the university campuses.